Bex Field ready for adventure in classic Hong Kong event
06:30 10 November 2015
Norfolk’s star bowler Bex Field is enjoying an adventure in Kowloon, where she is proud to be representing England in the Hong Kong International Bowls Classic.
The Classic is the sport’s equivalent of Rugby Union’s Hong Kong Sevens – a prestigious invitation event that always attracts the best male and female bowlers in the world.
The event got under way at the weekend, when Field and her namesake Rebecca Wigfield, from Northamptonshire, were involved in what is essentially a curtain-raiser singles tournament, warming them up for the pairs.
Field embarked on the Classic singles title with a confident 7-1, 7-2 straight sets win over Amy C Y Chan, from one of Hong Kong’s newest clubs, called Tseung Kwan O, but slipped up in the next round, losing to Phyllis Wong from the famous Hong Kong Football Club (HKFC) 9-4, 7-6.
“I was going along nicely in the first game, but had some bad luck at the start of the first set against Phyllis,” said Field. “I thought I had done enough to earn a tie-break, but it was not to be.”
Wigfield suffered a similar fate, so the duo are now even more determined to do well in the pairs. “We’re certainly looking forward to it,” added Field, who recently had her first taste of overseas bowls when she visited Israel.
“It will be a long campaign, because there are 12 pairs in our group, and we have been scheduled to play them all – that’s 11 matches, each lasting around two hours, before the knock-out stage starts next weekend,” she added.
Field and Wigfield, along with England’s male representatives Steve Mitchinson (Essex) and Chris Gale (Lancashire) have been amazed at how the colonial-style Kowloon Bowling Green Club (KBGC) sits snugly in the exotic location of Tsim Sha Tsui.
The club is surrounded by street markets and night clubs whilst incredible high-rise buildings provide an unusual backdrop for Drake’s ancient game of bowls.
“It’s completely unlike anything we have experienced before,” explained Field. “But the game of bowls goes on regardless, and we have to block out any distractions – but that’s part of what the sport is all about!”
In the pairs this week, Wigfield and Field have been grouped in a round robin with strong pairs from Australia, Malaysia, Ireland and Japan as well as a number of likely-looking local pairings – and must finish in the top three to qualify for the knockout stage.